Caryn Franklin MBE chairs a panel talk, with YKK Creative Director Kei Kagami, designer Jas MB, Designer Oliver and Designer Tomasz Donocik offering advice on designing accessories. YKK is a Japanese manufacturing company for fastening products such as zips, owned by designer Kei Kagmi.

The beginning of the talk started off with a video of YKK at work, where Kei can be seen selecting and storing his accessory collection. Kei began his career working for John Galliano in 1989. All the panellists agreed that you have to consider commerciality when designing, thinking about the audience and where your collection would fit in the market. Suggestions included researching and going to manufacturers and supplies to see what is needed.

Jas was keen to express when asked, “the standard [at Graduate Fashion Week] is brilliant.” He also explained “the moment and the timing will take you.” Each member of the panel motivated the audience and explained to them to believe in what they are doing, a key point to being a successful designer. When asked by Caryn how to stay in love with what you do, he stated, “I like to be honest with yourself.” Caryn and the panellists ended saying that although all creatives doubt themselves, “the beauty of youth brings passion and flexibility,” although most graduates are young and less experienced, we have the passion, drive and social media benefit as Caryn added; to take the graduates far. 


Words by Emily Bone

Photography by Deborah Smith